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Historical Society Meeting Features Speaker Lonis Wendt


Lonis Wendt of Vivian, S.D., will be the guest speaker for the Edgemont Historical Society’s Annual Meeting Tuesday, July 22, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Wendt will be talking about the Cheyenne to Custer Stage route and stage stations along the route.
The meeting will be held at the Edgemont Senior Center.
Lonis Wendt has been interested in “history” for most of his life. Wendt has written dozens of newspaper articles about WWII, to the Enduring Freedom cause, Lewis and Clark, Missouri River history, West River SD History, a booklet about the Life of Scotty Philip, History of Lyman Co., sports and current events.
He and wife Lois have explored the Lewis and Clark Trail from Monticello, Va, to Ft. Clatsop, Ore., revisiting remarkable places several times, making new discoveries.
Since 1998, he has presented over 150 programs about the Lewis and Clark Expedition to schools and adult groups in conjunction with the South Dakota Discovery Center at Pierre, plus innumerable presentations about the gold trails.
A special project in 2013 was to write a series of booklets containing historical recollections of the famous Gold Trails that led to Deadwood during the Gold Rush years for the new “Days of ’76 Museum in Deadwood. These booklets are color-coordinated with a large map mural, showing the seven trails.
Wendt has traveled all seven trails extensively. Our current project is the retracing of the Cheyenne and Sidney trails and preparing accurate maps. Wendt served as historian, program coordinator and map-maker for the Ft. Pierre to Deadwood wagon road retrace in 2008, and also assisted with locating stage stations on the Miles City, Bismarck and Medora trails to Deadwood.
He was Co-author of a booklet titled; “Then and Now, Fort Pierre to Deadwood,” a comparison of the trail’s pathway with 100 years in between!
He has produced three DVD’s of his samplings of history, had a “narrator’s” role in a highly successful video documentary of Scotty Philip, titled “The Buffalo King,” and, was presented the South Dakota “Governor’s Award for History” in 2011. He was assigned Program Coordinator and presenter for the South Dakota 125th Anniversary Yankton to Pierre Trail retrace in Sept. of 2014.
Writing, experiencing history, and reading 20-25 books a year, are a perfect retirement pastime. A resident of Vivian, S.D., nearly his entire life, a Vivian High School graduate, served two years in the U.S. Army Signal Corps, Wendt was a Rural Mail Carrier for 41 years, owned a couple businesses, was a school board member for 14 years, town board member for over 40 years and been a lifetime volunteer for anything needed in his community.


Old West Excitement Kicks in at Melodrama

by Kristy McElhaney
It was another weekend of laugh out loud fun with the Melodrama last Thurs. - Sat. in Edgemont at the sale barn. Once again the Melodrama actors and volunteers made a great team.
“The Golden Fleecing” brings the excitement of the old west alive again, complete with a gun fight.
With a small cast of Edgemont locals, including Bill Curran as your resident villain and his assistant villain, Brianna Aldrich. Scott Corbett played a character with many hats. Jerusha Jones plays the heroine and Rodney Darrow the hero. Nancy Smith showed off her sanity or lack there of and Kim Darrow plays one mean granny.
The cast keeps you guessing to the end on who the bad guys really are. Don’t miss out on a chance to laugh with your fellow locals next weekend.
The group is part of the Edgemont Theatre Company and the play is under the direction of Suzanne Hollenbeck.
Remember dinner reservations are required and the play starts at 8 p.m., Thursday through Friday. For more information or reservations call 662-6275.

Landfill Board Moves Forward
With Phase 3 Work

By Anne Cassens
The Custer Fall River Regional landfill board of directors met July 10 at Hot Springs.
Chairman Larry Livingston presided.
Secretary Linda Mines reported that the loan/grant application went in before the July 1 deadline. The Phase 3 Project total cost will be approximately $700,000 with $450,000 coming from the State, if the grant/loan is awarded. The project will be bid out in the fall or early spring for completion in 2015. This will prepare the landfill for new areas to be opened as the Phase 2 areas are reclaimed to pasture.
Board Member David Hazeltine recommended paying Mines an extra $200 for loan application work, which the board approved. Mines was also given a raise from $750 per month to $1100 per month. Mines stated that her last increase in pay was in 2007, she does not want to be reimbursed for mileage, and she averages 60 hours per month.
Annual election of officers was held with all current officers re-elected. The Chairman is Larry Livingston of Fairburn, Vice Chair Gary Lipp of Custer, and Secretary-Treasurer Dave Hazeltine of Custer. Mines is the only district employee. Other board members present at this meeting were Craig Romey (Hot Springs), Carl Shaw (Edgemont), and Anne Cassens (Fall River County).
Landfill management is by Barker Concrete and Construction. Kerry Barker reported to the board that some changes need to be made in the permitting and tonnage fees for contaminated soils, because of additional paperwork and testing requirements coming from the state. The board approved permitting fees of $300 and tonnage fees of $24 per ton.
The financial reports were approved with the District having $680,103 in available funds and $260,854 in closure/post closure funds.
The next meeting of the board will be September 11 at the landfill near Edgemont at 6 p.m. Meetings are open to the public.




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